Maarten Vanden Eynde

Paleontologic Plastic IV

2014
Plastic, glass and wood
186 x 130 x 60 cm

Paleontologic Plastic IV is a made of plastic debris coming from the worlds oceans. Since the 1950s, plastics have grown into a major industry that affects all of our lives – from providing improved packaging to giving us new textiles, to permitting the production of wondrous new products and cutting edge technologies in such things as televisions, cars and computers. In short; the invention of plastic was the glue for globalisation. However, plastics are durable and degrade very slowly or not at all; the molecular bonds that make plastic so durable make it equally resistant to natural processes of degradation. In 2014, scientists reported for the first time the ingestion of microplastics by scleractinian corals on Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, presenting a possible solution to the problem of plastic pollution and the disappearance of coral reefs worldwide.